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,,Shonubi" revisited: Begründet die Zugehörigkeit zu einer Referenzklasse einen Schadensersatzanspruch?

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Nearly 20 years after the Shonubi case and an extended discussion in the Anglophone world on the admissibility and probative force of statistical evidence, the labour courts of Germany seem not to have learned a simple lesson: aleatory probabilities are not informative for the individual in question. In this paper I argue that innumeracy (that is the lack of ability to understand and apply simple numerical concepts) is underestimated – if not ignored – both within the German jurisprudence and legal theory. In this paper the pseudo-scientific methods of analyzing the evidence in the recent GEMA case by the labor courts of Berlin-Brandenburg and the Federal Labor Court are examined and it is shown that the persistence on applying reference class evidence to an individual-case ends up being not only theoretically unacceptable but also socially harmful.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 2013

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  • Archiv für Rechts- und Sozialphilosophie, edited by authorisation of the International Association for Philosophy of Law and Social Philosophy (IVR), is an international, peer-reviewed journal, first published in 1907. It features original articles on philosophical research on legal and social questions, covering all aspects of social and legal life.
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